Environmental Safeguard Specialist

Somali Electricity Access Project (SEAP) and Somali Electricity Sector Recovery Project

Ministry of Energy and Minerals, Government of Somaliland

  1. Background

The Ministry of Energy and Minerals (the Ministry) has established a Project Implementation Unit (PIU) to carry out the day to day activities of project planning, coordination and implementation of the Somali Electricity Access Project (SEAP). The Ministry intends to engage a consultant to provide Environmental Safeguard activities for the World Bank – financed energy sector projects within the PIU. These Terms of Reference define the scope of activities and responsibilities of the project Environmental and Social Safeguards Position.

  1. Project Overview

The Government of Somaliland has secured a grant from the World Bank to implement the Somali Electricity Access Project (SEAP). The project development objective of SEAP is to expand access to electricity in targeted urban, peri-urban, and rural communities.

SEAP consists of three components:

Component 1: Electrification of households and small businesses through standalone solar home systems

This component aims to reduce market barriers for the private sector to provide modern energy access through solar home systems and targets (i) poorer households and small businesses in areas that cannot afford to connect to mini-grid services; (ii) households and businesses in these areas that are not sufficiently close to a mini-grid to be economically connected; (iii) isolated villages and smaller settlements where mini-grids do not make economic sense; and (iv) nomadic pastoralists whose livelihoods do not lend themselves to a fixed electricity connection. This component will fund a range of market-building supply- and demand-side interventions in response to these challenges. The proposed intervention includes: Seed and result based grants, consumer awareness and quality assurance.


Component 2: Analytic work for enabling electrification through Solar Powered / Hybrid Mini-grids

This component will support the mini-grid sector in Somaliland. This component is expected to include the following activities: (i) Detailed geospatial mapping, (ii) Review of property rights and land issues pertaining to energy infrastructure investment, (iii) Pre-feasibility studies for hybridization, (iv) Pre-feasibility studies for greenfield (new) sites identified in geospatial mapping, (v) Developing structuring options for the financing, operation, and ownership of new mini-grids; and (vi) Defining legal, institutional and financing arrangements for developing mini-grids.

Component 3: Technical Assistance, Capacity Building and Project Management

This component will support a range of activities to strengthen the capacity of the Ministry and overall energy sector management, power and access planning, and provides support for project management/implementation, including staffing of the PIU.

  1. Scope of work for the Environmental  Safeguards Specialist (ESS)   
    1. Objective of the Assignment

The objective of the consultancy is to

  1. Provide technical advice on environmental safeguards and support the Ministry of Energy and Minerals with regard to the World Bank-financed SEAP project in line with World Banks safeguards policies. The ESS will also identify gaps in risk profiling, compliance, and propose measures to enhance compliance, ensuring effective and efficient engagement of the Ministry on environmental and social policy frameworks.
  2. Provide overall environmental management oversight during the implementation of the project, supporting and advising the PIU in addressing a variety of environmental issues at all the stages of the implementation of the project and in environment related training/awareness for each component of the project.
  3. Implement safeguards related activities as outlined in the Environmental and Social Management framework (ESMF) of the project.
  4. Prepare necessary documents, such as environmental guidelines and tools in consultation with stakeholders and help the PIU in commissioning and managing additional and/ or special studies/assessment, if necessary.
  5. Carry out citizen engagement, maintaining adequate stakeholder engagement and grievance redress mechanism and ensuring that private sector entities maintain the same at their level including liaison with CBOs, NGOs and project affected communities;
  6. The Environmental and Social Safeguards Specialist will report to the PIU coordinator. The successful applicant will work with the PIU and have frequent interactions with World Bank staff and other stakeholders


    1. Responsibilities

Working closely with the project coordinator of the Ministry of Energy and Minerals Project Implementation Unit (PIU), the Environmental Safeguards specialist is expected to


  1. Prepare guidelines, tools and notes for use in the project based on relevant environmental policies, acts and regulations/ directives of the GOSL and relevant Environmental and Social Framework safeguard (ESF) policies of World Bank Group
  2. Provide technical expertise on key issues related to environmental and social impact assessment and on sustainability risks in the design, preparation, implementation and supervision of SEAP operations.
  3. Provide support in supervision and monitoring of projects on the SEAP project portfolio in compliance with the applicable World Bank Policies/guideline and E&S requirements on a regular basis, which may include, overseeing E&S analysis of elevated risk clients, recommending risk mitigation measures where necessary
  4. Resolving E&S issues in case of non-compliance, and where needed, preparing a time-bound E&S action plan with specific follow-up procedures.
  5. Training of peers and clients on environmental awareness and management, as necessary.
  6. Organize environmental orientation & awareness, and training for project partners, local consultations as well as local community engagement and other relevant stakeholders.
  7. Prepare environmental information materials and help the client/s in disseminating the information to the relevant stakeholders.
  8. Review subproject and activity plan, design, cost, and bid documents to ensure environmental factors and mitigations are incorporated, and subproject/ activity documents and environmental documents are in harmony;
  9. Carry out site supervisions during implementation of subprojects and activities, and provide feedback to the PIU Coordinator.
    1. Assignment Location

The Environmental Safeguards specialist will be based in the PIU office at the Ministry of Energy and Minerals Headquarters in Hargeisa, and will be expected to regularly meet and support the Project Coordinator. The consultant may also be called upon to undertake any other duties as determined by the Project coordinator, including attending more program-wide meetings.

    1. Time frame and Reporting

The expected duration of the consultancy is one year, with possibility of contract extension subject to satisfactory performance. The assignment is expected to commence on March 2021. The consultant will report to the SEAP Project coordinator through the Environmental & Social Safeguard specialist of the PIU Team. at the Minister of Energy and Minerals, and work closely with the World Bank Project Team for guidance and advice.

  1. Qualifications and Experience Requirements

The candidate should have the following desired qualifications and experience:

  • Bachelor’s degree in Environment, Energy, Public health and or relevant fields
  • Master’s degree will be an added advantage
  • 3-5 years of progressive experience in environment and development work.
  • Competencies in occupational health and safety
  • Experience in development work in remote areas is a must.
  • Knowledge of Environmental and Social issues and conditions for Renewable Energy projects
  • Experience in projects by NGO’s, international development organizations, governments and public institutions is essential
  • Experience in Environmental compliance and Monitoring and Evaluation is essential.
  • Understanding of Somaliland’s unique context
  • Fluency in oral and written Somali and English
  • Readiness to work in multi-cultural and fast – paced environment meeting tight deadlines
  • Reputable person with good ethical and moral character.
  • Possess GBV specific skills to supervise issues related to GBV (e.g., supervise signing of Codes of Conduct (CoCs), verify working GRM for GBV is in place, refer cases where needed) and work with GBV Services Providers as entry points into service provision to raise awareness of the GRM.


  1. Inputs/facility provided by the Client

The client will provide office space with necessary furniture and other facilities such as printing facility etc. to enable the consultant to perform day-to-day work. The Client shall also provide soft and hard copies of any existing relevant project documents e.g. manuals if any on signing of the contract.